To explain the main tasks undertaken by project managers To introduce software project management and to describe its distinctive characteristics To discuss project planning and the planning process To show how graphical schedule representations are used by project management To discuss the notion of risks and the risk management process
Concerned with activities involved in ensuring that software is delivered on time and on schedule and in accordance with the requirements of the organisations developing and procuring the software. Project management is needed because software development is always subject to budget and schedule constraints that are set by the organisation developing the software.
The product is intangible. The product is uniquely flexible. Software engineering is not recognized as an engineering discipline with the sane status as mechanical, electrical engineering, etc. The software development process is not standardised. Many software projects are one-off projects.
Proposal writing. Project planning and scheduling. Project costing. Project monitoring and reviews. Personnel selection and evaluation. Report writing and presentations.
These activities are not peculiar to software management. Many techniques of engineering project management are equally applicable to software project management. Technically complex engineering systems tend to suffer from the same problems as software systems.
May not be possible to appoint the ideal people to work on a project Project budget may not allow for the use of highly- paid staff; Staff with the appropriate experience may not be available; An organisation may wish to develop employee skills on a software project. Managers have to work within these constraints especially when there are shortages of trained staff.
Probably the most time-consuming project management activity. Continuous activity from initial concept through to system delivery. Plans must be regularly revised as new information becomes available. Various different types of plan may be developed to support the main software project plan that is concerned with schedule and budget.
Plan DescriptionQuality plan Describes the quality procedures and standards that will be used in a project. See Chapter 27.Validation plan Describes the approach, resources and schedule used for system validation. See Chapter 22.Configuration Describes the configuration management procedures andmanagement plan structures to be used. See Chapter 29.Maintenance plan Predicts the maintenance requirements of the system, maintenance costs and effort required. See Chapter 21.Staff development Describes how the skills and experience of the project teamplan. members will be developed. See Chapter 25.
Establish the project constraintsMake initial assessments of the project parametersDefine project milestones and deliverableswhile project has not been completed or cancelled loop Draw up project schedule Initiate activities according to schedule Wait ( for a while ) Review project progress Revise estimates of project parameters Update the project schedule Re-negotiate project constraints and deliverables if ( problems arise ) then Initiate technical review and possible revision end ifend loop
The project plan sets out: The resources available to the project; The work breakdown; A schedule for the work.
Introduction. Project organisation. Risk analysis. Hardware and software resource requirements. Work breakdown. Project schedule. Monitoring and reporting mechanisms.
Activitiesin a project should be organised to produce tangible outputs for management to judge progress. Milestones are the end-point of a process activity. Deliverables are project results delivered to customers. The waterfall process allows for the straightforward definition of progress milestones.
Split project into tasks and estimate time and resources required to complete each task. Organize tasks concurrently to make optimal use of workforce. Minimize task dependencies to avoid delays caused by one task waiting for another to complete. Dependent on project managers intuition and experience.
Estimating the difficulty of problems and hence the cost of developing a solution is hard. Productivity is not proportional to the number of people working on a task. Adding people to a late project makes it later because of communication overheads. The unexpected always happens. Always allow contingency in planning.
Graphical notations used to illustrate the project schedule. Show project breakdown into tasks. Tasks should not be too small. They should take about a week or two. Activity charts show task dependencies and the the critical path. Bar charts show schedule against calendar time.
14/7 15 days 15 days M1 T3 8 days T9 T1 5 days 4/8/03 25/8/03 25/7/034/7/03 T6 M4 M6 M3 start 20 days 7 days 15 days T7 T11 T2 25/7/03 11/8/03 5/9/03 10 days 10 days M2 M7 M8 T4 T5 15 days T10 10 da ys 18/7/03 T12 M5 25 days T8 Finish 19/9/03
Risk management is concerned with identifying risks and drawing up plans to minimise their effect on a project. A risk is a probability that some adverse circumstance will occur Project risks affect schedule or resources; Product risks affect the quality or performance of the software being developed; Business risks affect the organisation developing or procuring the software.
Risk Affects DescriptionStaff turnover Project Experienced staff will leave the project before it is finished.Management change Project There will be a change of organisational management with different priorities.Hardware Project Hardware that is essential for the project will notunavailability be delivered on schedule.Requirements change Project and There will be a larger number of changes to the product requirements than anticipated.Specification delays Project and Specifications of essential interfaces are not product available on scheduleSize underestimate Project and The size of the system has been underestimated. productCASE tool under- Product CASE tools which support the project do notperformance perform as anticipatedTechnology change Business The underlying technology on which the system is built is superseded by new technology.Product competition Business A competitive product is marketed before the system is completed.
Risk identification Identify project, product and business risks; Risk analysis Assess the likelihood and consequences of these risks; Risk planning Draw up plans to avoid or minimise the effects of the risk; Risk monitoring Monitor the risks throughout the project;
Risk type Possible risksTechnology The database used in the system cannot process as many transactions per second as expected. Software components that should be reused contain defects that limit their functionality.People It is impossible to recruit staff with the skills required. Key staff are ill and unavailable at critical times. Required training for staff is not available.Organisation The organisation is restructured so that different managemental are responsible for the project. Organisational financial problems force reductions in the project budget.Tools The code generated by CASE tools is inefficient. CASE tools cannot be integrated.Requirement Changes to requirements that require major design rework ares proposed. Customers fail to understand the impact of requirements changes.Estimation The time required to develop the software is underestimated. The rate of defect repair is underestimated. The size of the software is underestimated.
Assess probability and seriousness of each risk. Probability may be very low, low, moderate, high or very high. Risk effects might be catastrophic, serious, tolerable or insignificant.
Risk Probability EffectsOrganisational financial problems force reductions in Low Catastrophicthe project budget.It is impossible to recruit staff with the skills required High Catastrophicfor the project.Key staff are ill at critical times in the project. Moderate SeriousSoftware components that should be reused contain Moderate Seriousdefects which limit their functionality.Changes to requirements that require major design Moderate Seriousrework are proposed.The organisation is restructured so that different High Seriousmanagement are responsible for the project.
Risk Probability EffectsThe database used in the system cannot process as Moderate Seriousmany transactions per second as expected.The time required to develop the software is High Seriousunderestimated.CASE tools cannot be integrated. High TolerableCustomers fail to understand the impact of Moderate Tolerablerequirements changes.Required training for staff is not available. Moderate TolerableThe rate of defect repair is underestimated. Moderate TolerableThe size of the software is underestimated. High TolerableThe code generated by CASE tools is inefficient. Moderate Insignificant
Considereach risk and develop a strategy to manage that risk. Avoidance strategies The probability that the risk will arise is reduced; Minimisation strategies The impact of the risk on the project or product will be reduced; Contingency plans If the risk arises, contingency plans are plans to deal with that risk;
Risk StrategyOrganisational Prepare a briefing document for senior managementfinancial problems showing how the project is making a very important contribution to the goals of the business.Recruitment Alert customer of potential difficulties and theproblems possibility of delays, investigate buying-in components.Staff illness Reorganise team so that there is more overlap of work and people therefore understand each other’s jobs.Defective Replace potentially defective components with bought-components in components of known reliability.
Risk StrategyRequirements Derive traceability information to assess requirementschanges change impact, maximise information hiding in the design.Organisational Prepare a briefing document for senior managementrestructuring showing how the project is making a very important contribution to the goals of the business.Database Investigate the possibility of buying a higher-performance performance database.Underestimated Investigate buying in components, investigate use of adevelopment time program generator
Assess each identified risks regularly to decide whether or not it is becoming less or more probable. Also assess whether the effects of the risk have changed. Each key risk should be discussed at management progress meetings.
Risk type Potential indicatorsTechnology Late delivery of hardware or support software, many reported technology problemsPeople Poor staff morale, poor relationships amongst team member, job availabilityOrganisational Organisational gossip, lack of action by senior managementTools Reluctance by team members to use tools, complaints about CASE tools, demands for higher-powered workstationsRequirements Many requirements change requests, customer complaintsEstimation Failure to meet agreed schedule, failure to clear reported defects
Good project management is essential for project success. The intangible nature of software causes problems for management. Managers have diverse roles but their most significant activities are planning, estimating and scheduling. Planning and estimating are iterative processes which continue throughout the course of a project.
A project milestone is a predictable state where a formal report of progress is presented to management. Project scheduling involves preparing various graphical representations showing project activities, their durations and staffing. Risk management is concerned with identifying risks which may affect the project and planning to ensure that these risks do not develop into major threats.
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